Competing....What is your driving force?
Many of our readers have either competed in bodybuilding or fitness events or are at least thinking of competing in the near future. I thought I would touch on this subject and what it really means to compete and what drives those that compete in events. Over my competitive career I often asked myself...” What am I competing for?” Was it just a Trophy, was it for some reward, was it for bragging rights or to blow the competition away? The truth is the number 1 reason why you compete is to test yourself, your capabilities, to test your drive, determination, dedication and all those words that are so easy to say but much harder to do. I see so many people get caught up on a result, I know even I have fallen victim to this mind set in my competitive journey. These days in the age of social media things have changed a little. Competing for the right reasons has been over shadowed by the “look at me” mind set. Much more pressure because you are putting yourself on a spot. All your friends and family are watching and waiting for the results. This can work well for some and can be devastating for others. Now, the way you take a final result depends on why you are doing this in the first place. If you are doing it for a personal achievement and have done everything you possibly could you will always be proud. However, if you are doing it for mere bragging rights or external praise you will be disappointed. You have to be prepared to be “Judged” and be prepared for the outcome of that judgement. In Bodybuilding and Figure the judging is more objective; in Fitness Modeling and all Modeling based events the judging can be subjective. In a Fitness Modeling event despite having a judging criteria each judge interprets that criteria in their own way and may have a preference in the type of “look” that they consider meets the given criteria. In Fitness Modeling the judging is based on a total look, not just the body. Stage presence, beauty, grooming, choice of attire, are all taken into consideration on top of body conditioning. In bodybuilding the judging is a little clearer as the judges are looking at set elements, muscle size, definition, symmetry, balance. Ideally the winner is usually the person with the least weak points and a balance of size, shape and detail. At the end of the day no matter what the placings are as long as you believe deep in your heart you have given 100% to your training, diet, presentation you should be happy. This is your journey, use it to build not ONLY your body but your character...your SPIRIT. Your body is NOT who you are..... It’s a reflection of your current work ethic, lifestyle and beliefs! Take heed in what you have become through your personal journey, how it has changed your life for the better. Setting goals and following through to the end is what builds strength of character and substance that hopefully empowers other aspects of your life. When seeking feedback after an event never ask your close friends or family. They will always be kind and say you looked great no matter what. Ask someone that has experience, is objective and will ultimately tell you the truth and offer some real time constructive feedback. I recall many times when I placed lower in a show my friends and family always said I should have won! I know they were just being kind, not constructive. However to move forward, you need the truth. As many of you know we host Bodybuilding and Fitness events here in Australia. I have said from the very beginning all competitors are equal no matter when they have started their journey. This is why we provide opportunities and exposure for as many athletes as we possibly can irrespective of where they placed in a show. When we select our Team Vegas athletes it is not based purely on placings. When we select Cover Models for Natural Bodz Magazine or our Sports Model Calendar placings do not come into play. Placings are not important to me as I believe all competitors deserve the same opportunities, because I understand that placings will change over the years...and they do. For Fitness Models and Bikini Models you have to nail down a reason why you are competing. For many that have businesses in the industry, PT’s, Coaches, and Dieticians etc yes a title is great but exposure is what builds credibility. You don’t have to have won a ton of titles to be successful. If you gain exposure and credibility in the industry success will follow if you are business savvy. Finally competing should always be a personal goal. Something you set for yourself and follow through right to the very end. In the process and throughout the journey you become a stronger person both inside and out. Just remember placings will change, you will win some and some you won’t. What matters is who you become through the process, a stronger, healthier and more confident person. Competitions are great as long as your driving force is to become a better you. On top of this do it because you love it, and do it with passion. Remember where you began, and keep your eyes fixed firmly on where you want to go. Most of all enjoy the amazing benefits that this lifestyle has to offer, the number 1 benefit....you are now a fitter and healthier version of yourself than you were 6-12 months ago. Competing is great, if and only you are doing it for the right reasons. Test yourself, how far can you go? This is life, get to it!
Yours in health and fitness
Natural Bodz Magazine
Steve Jones Editor / CEO Australian Natural Bodz